My guest today is Kari E. Gray, Founder of GreenSurance Natural Medicine. We’ll be talking about Obamacare requirements and some options for how to fulfill them, including her innovative new program that cove rs alternative medicine as well as conventional. A passion in Kari’s professional career left by terminal cancer, Kari’s determination to survive by exploring all options despite medical diagnosis of no survival, led a tenacious, driven mother to natural treatments that in time gave her a second chance at life. Twenty-five years later she has an even more amazing story and passion to lead the natural medicine healthcare mission. As an insurance professional, Kari’s knowledge of healthcare including first-hand experience of being denied coverage when choosing natural treatments, empowered her with a commitment to ‘pay it forward’ and help people with life saving healthcare. www.mygreensurance.org
TOXIC FREE TALK RADIO
ObamaCare Alternatives Insurance that Includes Holistic Care
Host: Debra Lynn Dadd
Guest: Kari E. Gray
Date of Broadcast: May 19, 2015
DEBRA: Hi. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. This is Toxic Free Talk Radio where we talk about how to thrive in a toxic world and live toxic free. It’s Tuesday, May 19th, 2015 on a beautiful day here in Clearwater, Florida. Today, we’re going to talk about insurance, insurance, insurance. Oh, wow! I just want to say what a mess this is.
Okay. So I’ll just say that for the past – I don’t know how many years, four or five years, I had a wonderful little insurance – I’ll say “insurance” – that I pay $69 a month for. What it does is it pays for doctor visits. It pays 100% of labs and it gives a prescription discount. It’s $69 a month. Now, that is ending because of ObamaCare.
So I did my taxes this year. There’s this thing about having to pay the penalty if you don’t have insurance. What I saw in my tax return was that it just asks you, “Do you have adequate insurance?” And then you just get to answer yes or no. I just answered yes because I felt like that I had adequate healthcare. But it didn’t even have a definition of what that meant in the instructions with the taxes.
My guest today knows all about this. Not only does she know all about ObamaCare, but she has a new insurance program that qualifies for being your insurance for ObamaCare that also gives you holistic care. She’s going to tell us all about everything.
Her name is Kari Gray. She’s the Founder of GreenSurance Natural Medicine. Hi, Kari.
KARI GRAY: Good morning. How are you?
DEBRA: I’m good. And you’re in Hawaii. How is it in Hawaii?
KARI GRAY: It’s wonderful! It’s Hawaii. Is there more to say? We always have sunshine and we have rain. And it’s green and it’s always beautiful.
DEBRA: It sounds like Florida. I’ve never been to Hawaii, but I’ve seen pictures and it’s a place I’d like to go one day.
KARI GRAY: Yes.
DEBRA: Tell us your story of how you got to establishing GreenSurance Natural Medicine.
KARI GRAY: This has been actually quite a long journey. But I’ll focus in on just the most recent part of it just because of the fact that it’s most relevant.
Basically, as you know, we have this ObamaCare legislation. I have written a patent actually for a natural medicine health insurance. Recognizing the bureaucracy of insurance – I’m a licensed insurance professional, so just recognizing how flow change is coming and recognizing that there’s also this love-hate relationship that people seem to have with insurance.
So really, just doing market testing, as we called it, kind of field of testing a product, people were very excited of the idea that there would be a product that would give them alternative medicine, but weren’t [inaudible 00:04:24]. It was kind of strange, the responses that we’re getting from people are strange.
And so continuing the research actually the legislation is how I actually came upon a different kind of application. The law basically said that there were exemptions to the penalty. So I really focused in on what the exemptions were. I won’t go into all of it now. Anyway, there were a number of different exemptions and organizations that qualified. It was a strenuous list and it seems really rather unusual that anybody could even pass this.
For example, they had to be in existence before 1999 and they had to have third party verification. There were just a lot of very ambiguous things. I was like, “Wow! I’m not for sure who else qualifies for this because who would have known in 1999 or before what was coming down the pipe years later.”
Anyway, as I continued to research, then I found that actually there were a lot of organizations to start with that applied for that exemption. But because of the criteria – there were more – they couldn’t pass. And what remained were just a handful of organizations that actually qualified.
That’s how this actually migrated from insurance to what’s called cost sharing. And cost sharing is an alternative. It’s like if you think about the difference between what a credit union offers and what a bank offers.
When you realize that there is a difference between the two, yet the service they provide to individuals feels the same, there is a completely different dynamic that goes into how they do and what they do. And that is for profit is what a bank does and for people or for members is what a credit union does. That’s really the similarity and difference that health insurance has with cost sharing.
We are a non-profit and we’re a coalition of non-profit. What we’re doing is using the federal law to provide something that’s really not done anywhere. And that’s what’s really exciting about this because what that has now opened up – we’re not inside, we’re not mandated by ObamaCare to have all of the kinds of coverage that ObamaCare requires for an insurance company to have, which is what skyrocketed the rate. For example, no one can be turned down. That’s a big problem. So that means everybody has to be insured.
The next problem is that you can have any kind of lifestyle and you can have any pre-existing conditions. All of those things are what are making it hard for all the other people, who, like yourself, may have had one small insurance policy. Now, those are no longer in existence because there are actually 10 different criteria that, according to ObamaCare, an insurance policy have to make. If it doesn’t make that, then that’s why they basically have to put some money to the policy or they can’t even reissue them. So that explains how your policy is lost because it just doesn’t qualify any longer.
There are a lot of people that are kind of thrown under the bus in all of this. Anyway, the great thing is that the cost sharing is a wonderful alternative. It’s not insurance, but it actually serves the same capacity and it gives people also what has never been given before. So it’s not just alternative, but it’s a conventional and alternative approach to medicine and it’s all under the same organizational services that are being offered now.
DEBRA: So now, there are a lot of details that you can give us and I want you to give all these details. But before we get to those, I want to talk a little bit more just because I think that I and a lot of other people don’t understand this. So what ObamaCare wants – and we’re going to run into the break, so you might not get to answer it all and then we’ll finish after the break. What Obama wants is for everybody to get insurance, regular insurance according to the guidelines that they have in ObamaCare. Correct me if I’m wrong. If you don’t, you have to pay a penalty. Am I right so far?
KARI GRAY: Yes, you’re correct.
DEBRA: Okay. So could you tell us about this penalty?
KARI GRAY: Yeah, sure. The penalty basically starts out small. It’s 1% of what’s called your AGI. That’s your Adjusted Gross Income. In other words, it’s not what your income starts out at. If you take some deductions, it’s that final number.
So it’s 1% of that number or $90. I think that’s how it starts. In other words, for a person who doesn’t even make enough that he would qualify for that, then it’s just $90. It’s not too bad, but basically what’s going to happen is time goes by, every year, that number goes up.
Anyway, it’s going to be a lot more significant. Of course, the more income the person makes, the more significant that’s going to become. So it’s going to actually be thousands and thousands of dollars as time goes by because I think by 2016, it will be 3%.
Just to give you an example and just to give your audience an example of what that really means. So if you just estimate what your adjusted gross income is, times that number, times 3%, you can just get an idea. Now that’s just what the penalty is.
That means you still don’t have any options really, but you’ve got to pay a penalty. That’s what it comes down to.
DEBRA: This year, when I was doing 2014 taxes, this is the first time that I saw that penalty. So it’s $90 for the 2014 taxes or 1%. Is that what you said? And then there’s 2015. By the time it’s 2016, it’s 3%. And then does it go up from there?
KARI GRAY: Actually, the legislation doesn’t go into it. This is where the…
DEBRA: Oh, wait! Wait! I have to cut you off because we have to go to break.
KARI GRAY: Okay.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. I’m talking with Kari Gray, the Founder of GreenSurance Natural Medicine about ObamaCare and what we can do to have alternative health as part of our insurance. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: We’re having some technical problems, but now we’re back. Kari, I hope you are still there with me. Are you there?
KARI GRAY: I am.
DEBRA: Yeah. Wasn’t that strange? I’ve been doing this show for two years and I’ve never had something like that happen. So I’m sorry that it happened on your show, but here we are again.
We were talking about – what were we talking about? I asked you a question. I’m sorry. My attention is on all this technical stuff. What were we talking about?
KARI GRAY: You were asking about the penalty. And I said that it’s going to be 3% by 2016 and you were asking if it goes up any further.
From anything that I’ve read, I don’t see anything expressing that right now, but it could be. I read a lot of information. I’ll let that be something that we can leave for another conversation when we have more time to research that. But I know that it goes up to 3%. That’s what I have seen.
DEBRA: So this is like forcing us to get insurance.
KARI GRAY: That’s the idea.
DEBRA: What if we don’t want insurance?
KARI GRAY: Then that’s what the penalty is to coerce a person into. I mean, that’s really what it comes down to. You can’t go to jail for it, but basically though they can seize some assets or freeze assets. Really the way they collect this is through refunds. That’s how they enforce it. It’s through an overpayment of taxes, then the IRS can take it from your refund.
DEBRA: I can’t tell you how unhappy this makes me because what is going to happen for me is that I’m either going to have to pay the penalty or I’m going to have to get insurance that I don’t even use or I can get something like your program.
KARI GRAY: Yes.
DEBRA: Your program is not insurance, but it qualifies under that other thing. So if I were to get your program – I don’t want to call it insurance, your cost sharing. But I guess people think of it as insurance anyway because it’s like [inaudible 00:19:01].
KARI GRAY: Yeah. It’s what most people think of it, but it isn’t and we don’t want to represent it that it is. That’s why we always clarify that it is not insurance.
Basically, I use the illustration about the credit union. Really cost sharing is where people come together with a united purpose. That united purpose is the fact that they basically are going to put their money together. It’s kind of an insurance called a risk pool.
Basically, when you pay premium, then that goes into obviously covering the cost of the insurance and all their salaries in the company and the profits and all that. But then a portion of it goes into what’s called the risk pool. When that claim is paid out, it comes out of the risk pool.
In cost sharing, it’s not the same, but it is similar in the fact that the person makes a donation to the community. And then those community resources are what actually in the end (because they’re combined with other people in the community as well), it actually is similar because it is what pays the medical cost that a person experiences at the end of the day. That’s really what we’re looking for. It’s a way to not go health care cost alone, which is what the penalty is all about or to try to encourage people or force them actually once it becomes more enforced.
It will become more enforced as time goes on. It’s written in the body of law, but it’s not really clear yet what’s going to happen.
But anyways, point being is that what cost sharing does is it gives people a way to really give themselves that protection, which is that they’re not going to be penalized and that they’ve got freedom. What we say is, “Freedom equals choice. And choice is power for medicine.”
If your choice in your health care is not just looking at things that potentially could be toxic. If you want to have some options outside of just the status quo of conventional approaches, then cost sharing actually is what you really need to look at because that’s the only way to get the freedom that, even under ObamaCare, will never be offered.
DEBRA: Okay. We need to go to break. We’ll talk more about this when we come back.
You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guess today is Kari Gray. She has found an alternative program for ObamaCare. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guess today is Kari Gray. She’s the Founder of GreenSurance Natural Medicine.
Kari, before we go on and have you to tell us all the details about your program, you have quite a dramatic personal story of how you got interested in this. Would you tell us your story?
KARI GRAY: Sure, yes. Actually that’s the true beginning of how this started. In 1988 – actually I’ll start with the funny part of the story.
We all remember – or we’re old enough to remember I guess I’ll say. When Oprah Winfrey evaporated in front of everybody when she throws this coat and there was this much smaller version of Oprah and it was shocking to everybody.
And then she followed it up with pulling a wagon that represented all the weight she lost.
DEBRA: I remember seeing that on TV. Yeah.
KARI GRAY: Yeah. It was an epic moment. Oprah had some real epic moments in her career as a talk show host for sure.
That motivated me because I always felt like I was overweight even though actually at the time, I really wasn’t. But anyway, it motivated me to go to my doctor because she had taken this miracle substance called Optifast. You had to go to the doctor and get a physical in order to get on it. That’s actually how I got started.
So I went to the doctor thinking, “I’m going to try this.” So I go and I have a complete physical. When I called to go back for my results, I didn’t even begin to guess where this was going.
I was given two diagnoses. The first one was multi sclerosis. I asked what the cure of it is. There is no cure, they told me. And the next thing was liver cancer. I said, “What?”
They said, “Yes. And the bad news is that you’re too far gone for chemo and radiation. Basically you didn’t have much longer to live. So I’m sorry. There’s really nothing we can offer you.” That was the news I was given that day.
That was very devastating needless to say. And 25 years old and I had a house full of kids and I was dying. It was very, very overwhelming. I was depressed, I was devastated and I was dying and I just went to bed.
So [inaudible 00:29:12] and I really didn’t know what I was going to do. But the one thing that I had the presence of mind to realize was that first of all, I needed to start exhausting options. Maybe there was something that the doctor didn’t know about. That was my first thought. I had no idea at the time what that could be.
And then the second one is I realized, especially when I got the second diagnosis, that the first thing I needed to do – I could feel what’s in me. I was starting to die. I could feel the process happening. It was like psychologically, I was starting the dying process. I recognized that the first thing I needed to do is I needed to stop listening to bad news because that really was creating quite a psychological mind play on my psyche and my will to live.
Anyway, that’s basically how this all got started. I don’t know if you can hear rain or not, but that’s what that is if you do hear it. Anyway, that’s how my story got started, basically just exploring the options.
I felt my eulogy to my children would be that, yes, I died young, but I exhausted every option for their sake. That’s what really pushed me to start reading and researching and talking to people. You got to realize this was before the Internet.
There was a lot of diligent effort on my part. And sure enough, it eventually got me to a practitioner who not only did she immediately, through her testing methods, find the cancer and again confirm that I was terminal with not much longer to live. But the good news for me was that – since I already knew, I told her she wasn’t breaking the news to me. So she felt better.
But she asked me if I believe that I had a chance. I said, “Well, I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t think I had a chance. That’s why I’m looking for something other than my doctor and what they told me.”
She said, “Here’s the thing. I believe that you do have a chance because you’re young.” And she said, “But it’s going to require 100% diligence on your part. You got to be fully committed to everything I tell you to do. This is going to take a lot of change on your part.”
But she said this. “Your health insurance, you have insurance, right?” I said yes. She goes, “Your health insurance is going to pay for it.” I said, “Wow! Okay, let’s do it.” I didn’t know what other options I had and I really didn’t have any.
That’s how this shift started in my own personal story. I was just basically trying to survive, a catalyst, the soon-to-be death that I was facing.
What I was found was the problem. I found that there were a lot of things that I was doing wrong. That’s really what was causing the cancer.
Unfortunately, I had a lot of people. Every time we have a health issue, I just went to the doctor. And I usually ended up with a prescription like an antibiotic prescription. I did recognize how the overuse of antibiotics and all the other things in my life, too much sugar in my diet, too much stress in my life, birth controls. All of those things were contributing to setting me up to having a compromised immune system.
So I learned all the things that I was doing wrong. And I learned how to change all of those things, and it was a massive change. She was right when she said it’s going to take a lot of change, a lot of commitment on my part. It really did.
Anyway, here’s the interesting part. Eight months later, I’ve been spending thousands and thousands of dollars on all of this.
First of all, I submitted all my receipts. I thought this is [inaudible 00:33:19]. I submitted all my receipts. What’s interesting is the letter that I got back. They said that not only was I out of coverage for what I was doing, but it was unproven. So I was like, “That’s very interesting.”
I ended up going back to the doctor and I want to suggest seeing if I had made any progress. Now the way that the conversation went from here really again shifted my consciousness.
The first thing is my doctor was shocked that I was alive. “Okay, that was great. That was great news.” So I want to tell her why I was alive and what I was doing. And then I was shocked because she didn’t want to hear it and I was like, “What?”
She said, “Absolutely, I do not want to hear this.” And she said, “We are running new tests and you need to prepare for the works.” And I think she thought maybe I was delusional. I don’t know. But the point is that I spent a few more days anxious of waiting again, more bad news.
But this was where it all shifted for me because when she came in, she had my charts down and she didn’t make eye contact with me. So I sat there in silence for a while. And then I thought it was awkward. So I just decided to break the silence and started talking again about what I’ve been doing. And then she immediately stopped me. So we sat there.
And then finally, she looked at me and she said, “I saw what your original test was like and I see what these look like. And I’m here to tell you, the liver does not do this on its own. I don’t know what you’ve been doing and I don’t want to know. But I know this much, you’re cancer-free. Congratulations!”
DEBRA: We’re going to go to break there. That’s an amazing story, really wonderful.
You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Kari Gray. When we come back, she’s going to tell us about her program that you can use instead of Obama Insurance so that you can get alternative health as part of your program and not just regular doctors. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Kari Gray. She is the founder of GreenSurance Natural Medicine.
Kari, as we ended off before the break, you were telling us how you did all these alternative things to get cancer-free and that your insurance didn’t cover any of them. So I consider that would be a big motivation for you to come up with a program where people who are having catastrophic situations like you had would have a program where they can get some help and support with the financial and with those kinds of illnesses.
So would you tell us in detail now about your program and what people get and what they don’t get? What does it cover? What is it all about?
KARI GRAY: Sure. There are a lot of things. Basically we let people to be aware of it. Our website actually is a great source of information and it actually is always kept most up to date. So please, if I can mention the website.
KARI GRAY: Okay. It’s MyGreenSurance.com.
DEBRA: Is it not .org?
KARI GRAY: Yeah, it’s both. We have .com and .org. Yeah, we own both. Anyway, basically that’s where all of the facts are up. Anything that I’m not covering that people still have, the FAQs is a great page to look at and so is the health plan. It just narrows it all down.
But basically what we’re talking about is this. The purpose of the community approach is that it’s to offer lessened basic treatment to people versus what conventional wants to do oftentimes. That really is nice. People don’t like to be having basic things if they can avoid that.
And it also offers things like it prevents more costly conventional treatment. That’s big because really now you’re getting into more proactive things that you can do for your health.
Just to give an example. In ObamaCare, it requires things like screening. They call that Preventive Treatment Screening. The problem with screening is that if the screening finds the disease, then it didn’t prevent anything. That’s the irony.
But we know more about ourselves, especially once we get educated and become in tune with ourselves. Providers do obviously. I mean their job is to figure it all out. But if we’re really in tune, then that really helps us to stay proactive and healthy.
That just gives you an overview of really what the criteria is. So it really opens up doors to things like acupuncture, chiropractic, herbal regimes, massage therapy, homeopathy, colonics, detox programs, Chinese medicine.
And then if you are talking about some of the bigger things like cancer for example, you have to understand that this isn’t a health plan for people who have cancer. It’s a health plan for people who are healthy who can get cancer for example.
The way to illustrate that is you don’t buy car insurance after an accident. You buy car insurance in case.
DEBRA: Yeah. That’s what insurance is for. It’s the in case.
KARI GRAY: That’s where we get – sometimes people will say, “I have cancer.” It doesn’t work in a cost sharing environment because we can’t keep the rates low if the people that are participating and donating to the cost sharing communities are coming in terminal already.
That’s the reason why unfortunately we can’t put them in the cost sharing. But we do have another program we’re working where they can have access to at least discount services.
Once a healthy member is diagnosed with some terminal illness, things like this will be very important, which is like intravenous vitamin C treatment or we have got things like [inaudible 00:43:32] technology. There are a number of them.
[inaudible 00:43:40] cream, hemp oil, there’s a lot of real specializing for cancer for example. Oxygen therapy, chelation, oxygen IV therapy, there are a lot of things for serious disease that really open up the door to recovery. That’s really what the bottom line is in all this.
It’s not the slow road and the most profitable road to an early to an early grave. It’s actually how to help a person recover their health so that they can have the optimum life. That’s really what we’re talking about, not a managed care or treatment mentality.
That’s really the difference, just the polar extreme between conventional and alternative. While conventional deals with symptoms, alternative deals with causes. That’s really what we’re talking about. It’s opening up this place for people now to start addressing causes so that they don’t have a lifetime dependent on a prescription because that’s actually not covered in the health plan, health insurance either. A short term is, but not long term.
That’s why we use the alternatives, then we can break the symptom dependence cycle, pill for every ill, which is basically often what happens when a doctor is limited only conventional approaches, which is what is part of ObamaCare.
DEBRA: So I just want to be clear because you and I have talked about this. I’m considering getting this program myself. I haven’t made a decision yet if it’s the right thing for me.
But one of the things that I learned about when I was talking to Kari was that it’s not insurance-like if you were to get insurance and then they pay for all your doctor visits and stuff like that. It really is for if something happens in the future that is a big thing like cancer or heart disease or something like that where you have a lot of medical bills, that it covers those kinds of things.
So you still have to pay for going to a chiropractor, going to a dentist, doing whatever. It’s not kind of plan. But when you need it if you need it, it’s going to allow you to get all these alternative treatments that insurance doesn’t cover.
And it’s a very low price. Tell them about the price.
KARI GRAY: Okay. Let me just clarify something here. Just to give your listeners an idea here.
We’re talking about things like accidents, ambulance, X-rays, lab work, emergency rooms, home health care, hospital services, surgery, [inaudible 00:46:27] outpatients, maternity care, prescriptions, surgery, therapy, on and on it goes. I mean it’s not just singular approaches with alternatives, but it’s actually the very comprehensive health plan.
There are a lot of things to understand about it. I know that it’s hard to digest a plethora of information all at one time, but just to give you an idea. This is really part of the excitement that people have when they realize how low cost this really is.
For example, if…
DEBRA: Before you go on, let me just tell you that we only have three minutes left.
KARI GRAY: Thank you for that. So if it’s a single person, it could be anywhere from $249.99 a month to around $380. If they’re married, it could be $349 to $580. If it’s a family, it can be anywhere from $499 to $680.
Those are estimates because everyone falls in those estimates based on their health questionnaire that they complete. So those are just lows and highs, but it’s very, very affordable.
DEBRA: It is very affordable in comparison. I’m so happy that you’re doing what you’re doing because whether it works for everybody or doesn’t work for everybody, you’re taking a step out of the old insurance idea.
And you’re looking at how to bring the alternatives, help people afford the alternatives when they need some help. I think that what you’re doing will grow in the future to have other kinds of plans as well. That’s the way I see it at least.
You really are forging a new direction. I really appreciate that.
KARI GRAY: Thank you very much.
DEBRA: You’re welcome. We do have still about a minute left. Are there any final words you’d like to say? Let’s give your website address again.
KARI GRAY: Yes.
KARI GRAY: That’s right.
DEBRA: It really has all the information there.
KARI GRAY: Yes. Really what we say is that GreenSurance is about people who are ready for change. GreenSurance is about people who want an alternative to ObamaCare.
GreenSurance has a lot of messages, but really what it’s about is about environment. So it’s about being able to finally start having some control over something as important as your health care. And really isn’t that refreshing?
DEBRA: It is refreshing.
KARI GRAY: Yeah, it’s very fresh and organic. And people are very really excited about that. We have the ability now to become the change that we want to see. How that happens is like-minded people get together for making change happen. That’s why we invite people to join us.
DEBRA: That’s great. That’s great. Again, I’m going to give the URL for the website. It’s MyGreenSurance.org. There’s so much more information there.
When I think about having to pay the penalty, why not take that penalty money and actually put it someplace so that I can get some help if I need that help? This sounds like an interesting place to put it. I’m looking for all kinds of alternatives for making sure I make the best ObamaCare choice.
You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. Be well.